MANILA — Two of the 32 Filipinos repatriated from Wuhan, China - the global epicenter of a coronavirus outbreak - are undergoing tests after developing a symptom of the disease, the Department of Health said Wednesday.
The 2 Filipinos, who are quarantined at the Athletes' Village in Tarlac province, have diarrhea, said Health Secretary Francisco Duque III.
This is a symptom of the novel coronavirus, along with fever, coughing and shortness of breath, according to a World Health Organization care guide.
"Pinapa-evaluate natin iyan at pinapa-test din natin just to make sure na wala silang problema at hindi sila nahawahaan," Duque said of the 2 patients.
(We are evaluating and testing them to make sure that they have no problems and are not infected.)
Believed to have emerged last year in a market that sells wild animals, the new coronavirus had killed 1,110 and infected 44,200 in China, authorities said early Wednesday.
The Philippines has confirmed 3 novel coronavirus cases, including 1 death, all from Wuhan.
Authorities are monitoring some 261 patients locally, said Duque.
The Research Institute for Tropical Medicine is the country's lone facility for testing suspected coronavirus cases.
The government eyes accrediting 2 or 3 national hospitals to conduct the test, said Duque.
"Hindi naman iyan mabilis i-accredit dahil sinisiguro mo iyong standard ng testing talagang maayos at mahigpit. Kung nagkamali ka sa testing, delikado," he told DZMM.
(The accreditation won't be quick because you have to make sure that the testing standard is proper and strict. It will be dangerous if you make a mistake with the testing.)
The virus was officially named "COVID-19" at a conference in Geneva held by the World Health Organization, where the body's chief said countries had a chance of stopping its global spread. With a report from Agence France-Presse